German minister visits Ny-Ålesund

Barbara Hendricks, the German minister for the Environment, Nature Conservation, Building and Nuclear Safety recently spent several days in Ny-Ålesund.

The minister was joined by representatives from AWI, as well as political adviser for the Conservative Party, Jens Frølich Holter, and Kjerstin Askholt, the Governor of Svalbard for the first two days.

The group visited the Kings Bay Marine laboratory, took part in the daily weather balloon drop at the AWIPEV observatory, and were briefed on the ongoing research conducted by AWIPEV as well as the neighbouring nations and stations in Ny-Ålesund.

Marteen Loonen explains the habits of local birds. Photo: Turid Vilkensen

The minister about the send off the daily weather balloon. Photo: Turid Vilkensen

After an eventful morning and afternoon, Holte and the minister paid a visit to the top of the Zeppelin mountain where Kim Holmèn explained the ongoing research that is taking place hundreds of meters above sea level.

The delegation also paid a short visit to the new geodetic earth observatory, before getting a tour of the town's birdlife with Maarten Loonen from the University of Groningen.

The following day, the delegation took a boat trip in the Kongsfjord out to Corbel station, where they enjoyed an outdoor lunch in the nice weather.